Young’s invested £58.4m in latest financial year

By Nikkie Thatcher

- Last updated on GMT

Company update: Young's says the business reported a 'strong performance and is well positioned for future growth'
Company update: Young's says the business reported a 'strong performance and is well positioned for future growth'

Related tags Pubco + head office Finance Multi-site pub operators Property

Large pub operator Young’s has revealed it spent almost £60m on its existing estate and adding six sites to its portfolio.

In its preliminary results for the 53 weeks ending 3 April 2023, the business, which has 227 pubs, reported revenue was up by almost a fifth (19.4%) against the previous year to £368.9m.

Managed pub like-for-like revenue also increased by more than a tenth (12.9%) on a 52-week basis.

Young’s invested a total of £58.4m during the period with £24m on acquisition investment, including six new pubs and £34.4m across sites in its existing estate.

The cash put into existing pubs includes ‘standout schemes’ at the Crown, Bow, east London; Coborn, Mile End, east London; Crown, Lee, south-east London; Bull, Streatham, south London; Brook Green and Hammersmith Ram (both in Hammersmith, west London); Halfway House, Earlsfield, south London; and the East Hill, Wandsworth, south London.

Net debt for the business (including lease liabilities) decreased to £165.2m (an £8.6m reduction). Adjusted earnings before interest, taxation, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) was £85.5m.

Positive trading momentum

The company revealed including cash balances, it has £110.7m of its committed bank facilities for future flexibility and ongoing investment.

Chief executive Simon Dodd said: “I am honoured and privileged to lead such a great company with its wonderful heritage.

“Young’s is a business that places investment in its people and pubs at the heart of its decision making.

“These results are testament to the hard work of our teams over the past few years.

“The positive trading momentum of the first half continued throughout the period, with unwavering customer demand for our outstanding pubs and the unrivalled Young’s experience.”

In the report, he also outlined how external factors and events facing the sector have affected the business.

Young’s has fixed all its utility rates until March next year but the hike in energy bills has meant the company spent an additional £5.5m on the year – a rise of 82% on last year. But, the pub group boss also revealed cost pressures were beginning to ease.

Cost headwinds

“The negative impact of the rail strikes did not stand in the way of us achieving numerous record weeks, as sales were boosted by glorious sunshine and the first ever winter FIFA World Cup,” Dodd added.

“We were pleased to see a further increase in people visiting our city and central London pubs alongside positive Christmas trading.

“Our performance last year was even more impressive given the cost headwinds facing the industry and we are encouraged some of these pressures are starting to ease.

“It has been a good start to the new financial year with sunny weather over Easter and the early May bank holiday.”

Looking to the coming months, Dodd was optimistic about the business and how it will perform.

“There is also huge excitement for the Rugby World Cup later this year. We are confident our premium, well-invested predominantly freehold pub estate, alongside our healthy balance sheet, will continue to deliver superior returns for our shareholders,” he said.

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